Ideas to Slow Japan (Not KJF)

  • Moderator

    What are some good ways to slow Japan without going for a full blown KJF?

    I think the Allies need to use a balanced approach.  I like a split bid between EGY and Russia.  I think you need some additional firepower for Russia on the front lines to slow Germany a bit and give the other Allies a chance to get into the game.

    • I think some good early plays for the Allies are blocking/reinforcing Aus on UK/US 1.
      With some US airpower down there you can force the J fleet to stay together a bit longer and not immediately throw everything they have into Asia.

    • Falling back to Ind and trading Bur or then trading Ind can help you pick off a couple J inf, forcing them to go a bit heavier and with the Aus block/reinforcement you can probably gain a turn for yourself to set things up.

    • US air/naval buys.  Maybe not in rd 1, but in rd 2 you could have 2 acs, 4 ftrs there with a bomber or two lurking.  This saves the US NO and forces J to at least consider the Pac as a threat.  At some point you need at least 1 US trn.

    Using this apporach I usually spend Rd 1 (US) mostly on the Atlantic then from rd 2 on, it might be a 6-12 ipc for Eu or Afr (depending on if you are running 1-2 trns) and then 36-42 ipc for the Pac.

    • If the US can just set up a fleet in HI or Sol (Car is much better but obviously harder), you can run trns to really annoy Japan.

    42 ipc works good - AC, 2 ftrs, 1 dd per turn.  You don’t need to over buy DDs and can maybe save for more ftrs, but I think you can slow J down.

    The Other Allies need to hold at Per and somewhere like Novo/Kaz/Chi (any one of those).

    Any other ideas for slowing Japan or do some of these not really work?
    Any other good combo moves for the Allies to use in the Pac?

  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    I am a reminded of a game you and I played once, Of Anniversary edition, 1941.

    You suffered very horribly. :)  Albeit, your tactics I’m sure have changed.

    The tactic I was using at the time, was simple,  use everything that starts in the pacific theatre, IN the pacific theatre.  And use strategic building of air units with the US, out of WUS, to maximize the effective “oppurtunity” range of the allies.  A fighter in WUS can still make it off the coast of Gibraltar, or a bomber to the UK/Morocco.

    Focusing on transports at sea, and infantry on land when you can, is your best bet.  Avoid concentrations of Air power, and try to draw it away from IPC clusters.

    All of your suggestions have merit.


  • @DarthMaximus:

    What are some good ways to slow Japan without going for a full blown KJF?

    I think the Allies need to use a balanced approach.  I like a split bid between EGY and Russia.  I think you need some additional firepower for Russia on the front lines to slow Germany a bit and give the other Allies a chance to get into the game.

    This is a good general concept for the allies.  IMHO, the allies also need to roll for tech (if that’s part of your game options).  start early and you’ll get a roll a country for many turns while the war builds.  The allies need some help (dice, tech, bad axis play?) to win.

    @DarthMaximus:

    • I think some good early plays for the Allies are blocking/reinforcing Aus on UK/US 1.

    With some US airpower down there you can force the J fleet to stay together a bit longer and not immediately throw everything they have into Asia.

    I too like this idea. US2 the airforce can get into India if it was properly supported with Russians to make this doable.

    @DarthMaximus:

    • Falling back to Ind and trading Bur or then trading Ind can help you pick off a couple J inf, forcing them to go a bit heavier and with the Aus block/reinforcement you can probably gain a turn for yourself to set things up.

    If you’re lucky enough to do this.  Japan can collapse pretty quickly on Burma if they want to.  We like a Russian bomber buy on R1, in Caucasus.  This threatens the single transport taking Java/Sumatra (sz38).  Can slow Japanese expansion a little bit.

    The sick thing about Asia is that the Chinese can be ignored (for the most part)  Japan only needs Manchuria and kiangsu each turn.

    @DarthMaximus:

    • US air/naval buys.  Maybe not in rd 1, but in rd 2 you could have 2 acs, 4 ftrs there with a bomber or two lurking.  This saves the US NO and forces J to at least consider the Pac as a threat.  At some point you need at least 1 US trn.

    You would need all that and maybe more since the J1 philipines navy and 2 carriers from hawaii attack can be stationed in Hawaii J2.

    @DarthMaximus:

    Using this apporach I usually spend Rd 1 (US) mostly on the Atlantic then from rd 2 on, it might be a 6-12 ipc for Eu or Afr (depending on if you are running 1-2 trns) and then 36-42 ipc for the Pac.

    This is a tough return for the money.  US doesn’t really make much money in the pacific.  They have to grab the philipines to get $7.  Sure, you can maybe get some UK $, which is not a bad thing, don’t get me wrong, but it’s expensive.

    @DarthMaximus:

    • If the US can just set up a fleet in HI or Sol (Car is much better but obviously harder), you can run trns to really annoy Japan.

    42 ipc works good - AC, 2 ftrs, 1 dd per turn.  You don’t need to over buy DDs and can maybe save for more ftrs, but I think you can slow J down.

    If you’re going to commit to a US pacific navy, this is the way to go.

    @DarthMaximus:

    The Other Allies need to hold at Per and somewhere like Novo/Kaz/Chi (any one of those).

    Any other ideas for slowing Japan or do some of these not really work?
    Any other good combo moves for the Allies to use in the Pac?

    A good Japanese player will commit just enough to keep the USA navy at bay.  Surely, there will be some allied gains, but nowhere near enough to offset the costs.  Your bet bet would be to get a tech to catch the japanese navy unprepared (like scoring LR).  Who wants to rely on that.

    Sorry, I wish I did see a way for this to work, but against a capable Japanese player, it is not going to happen.  What you may gain in slowing the japanese, you lose allowing Germany to grow with less back door pressure.

  • Moderator

    @axis_roll:

    @DarthMaximus:

    • Falling back to Ind and trading Bur or then trading Ind can help you pick off a couple J inf, forcing them to go a bit heavier and with the Aus block/reinforcement you can probably gain a turn for yourself to set things up.

    If you’re lucky enough to do this.  Japan can collapse pretty quickly on Burma if they want to.   We like a Russian bomber buy on R1, in Caucasus.  This threatens the single transport taking Java/Sumatra (sz38).  Can slow Japanese expansion a little bit.

    The sick thing about Asia is that the Chinese can be ignored (for the most part)  Japan only needs Manchuria and kiangsu each turn.

    I’m not sure if there is much luck to it.  UK blocks AUS.  US reinforces with 1-2 ftrs, 1 bom.  UK falls back to Ind.

    Japan either commits to taking Aus in Rd 3 or to India.  They can’t have both (heavy) by rd 3 in this case.  Assuming you send your US ac/dd back towards WUS and drop another ac + 3 ftrs on the west coast in Rd 2. 
    If J went towards Aus, then US ftrs can reinforce Ind (if safe) or allows you to trade ind picking off the forward inf with your initial units plus ftr (egy).  If J goes hard after India then the US might be able to set up early position in Sol or HI (at the very least).

    Japan can ignore China, but at least then aren’t getting the ipcs for it.

    @axis_roll:

    @DarthMaximus:

    • US air/naval buys.  Maybe not in rd 1, but in rd 2 you could have 2 acs, 4 ftrs there with a bomber or two lurking.  This saves the US NO and forces J to at least consider the Pac as a threat.  At some point you need at least 1 US trn.

    You would need all that and maybe more since the J1 philipines navy and 2 carriers from hawaii attack can be stationed in Hawaii J2.

    That’s true, but not likely to happen, given the Aus block and small Ind stack. 
    So Japan isn’t going to try and push UK out of India and they aren’t going after Aus on J2???

    @axis_roll:

    A good Japanese player will commit just enough to keep the USA navy at bay.  Surely, there will be some allied gains, but nowhere near enough to offset the costs.  Your bet bet would be to get a tech to catch the japanese navy unprepared (like scoring LR).  Who wants to rely on that.

    Sorry, I wish I did see a way for this to work, but against a capable Japanese player, it is not going to happen.  What you may gain in slowing the japanese, you lose allowing Germany to grow with less back door pressure.

    I don’t think it is easy to commit “just enough”.  How much is that?  IPC for IPC or keeping just enough offense to prevent a US move?  B/c any ships J buys can’t prevent a move since both HI and Sol are 3 spots from Sz 62.  Unless J has an IC on Sum.  But HI is still open for a move.

    So are you saying there is no way to slow Japan unless you fully commit to a KJF?  Or that you have to place bid units in the Pac (Russian bom like you mentioned, etc)?

    I’m not saying you can do all these things every game or that containing Japan is easy, but I think you can force them into making tough decisions early on when they aren’t earning 50+.

    I will also say it requires strong Russian and UK play to hold Ger at bay, that’s why I like 2 offensive units for Russia in a bid.  It allows you to potentially counter Bst, Epl, and Ukr on Rus 1.  (you can’t counter all of them but Ger can’t leave armies vulnerable either).  This means Ger has to really think about what they bring into what on G1.


  • @DarthMaximus:

    @axis_roll:

    @DarthMaximus:

    • Falling back to Ind and trading Bur or then trading Ind can help you pick off a couple J inf, forcing them to go a bit heavier and with the Aus block/reinforcement you can probably gain a turn for yourself to set things up.

    If you’re lucky enough to do this.�  Japan can collapse pretty quickly on Burma if they want to.�  � We like a Russian bomber buy on R1, in Caucasus.�  This threatens the single transport taking Java/Sumatra (sz38).�  Can slow Japanese expansion a little bit.

    The sick thing about Asia is that the Chinese can be ignored (for the most part)�  Japan only needs Manchuria and kiangsu each turn.

    I’m not sure if there is much luck to it.  UK blocks AUS.  US reinforces with 1-2 ftrs, 1 bom.  UK falls back to Ind.

    Depends on what Japan does J1.  A strong push can be made on India for a J2 attack (borneo, Java, burma atttacks).  Yes, Philipines are ignored until J2.  Japan cannot do everything J1, so they pick and choose their thrust.

    @DarthMaximus:

    Japan either commits to taking Aus in Rd 3 or to India.  They can’t have both (heavy) by rd 3 in this case.  Assuming you send your US ac/dd back towards WUS and drop another ac + 3 ftrs on the west coast in Rd 2.Â

    was just in a game where a monster Japanese push on Hawaii happened J2.  Sure, India and Australia were spared, but this keeps ANY USA fleet thoughts out of play until USA 4.  A bit extreme, but was doable.

    @DarthMaximus:

    If J went towards Aus, then US ftrs can reinforce Ind (if safe) or allows you to trade ind picking off the forward inf with your initial units plus ftr (egy).  If J goes hard after India then the US might be able to set up early position in Sol or HI (at the very least).

    Agree with you here, which is why in my play group, we’ve been seeing more early Japan moves on USA, to keep the back door pressure from ever happening.

    @DarthMaximus:

    Japan can ignore China, but at least then aren’t getting the ipcs for it.

    I think Japan can do without the extra few IPCs for a while (2-6?)
    Recall I said they need machuria and kiangsu.

    @DarthMaximus:

    @axis_roll:

    @DarthMaximus:

    • US air/naval buys.  Maybe not in rd 1, but in rd 2 you could have 2 acs, 4 ftrs there with a bomber or two lurking.  This saves the US NO and forces J to at least consider the Pac as a threat.  At some point you need at least 1 US trn.

    You would need all that and maybe more since the J1 philipines navy and 2 carriers from hawaii attack can be stationed in Hawaii J2.

    That’s true, but not likely to happen, given the Aus block and small Ind stack. 
    So Japan isn’t going to try and push UK out of India and they aren’t going after Aus on J2???

    All in due time.  Unfortunately, we’ve seen even better Japanese play in my group lately.  That’s all the axis needs!  :wink:

    @DarthMaximus:

    @axis_roll:

    A good Japanese player will commit just enough to keep the USA navy at bay.  Surely, there will be some allied gains, but nowhere near enough to offset the costs.  Your bet bet would be to get a tech to catch the japanese navy unprepared (like scoring LR).  Who wants to rely on that.

    Sorry, I wish I did see a way for this to work, but against a capable Japanese player, it is not going to happen.  What you may gain in slowing the japanese, you lose allowing Germany to grow with less back door pressure.

    I don’t think it is easy to commit “just enough”.  How much is that?  IPC for IPC or keeping just enough offense to prevent a US move?  B/c any ships J buys can’t prevent a move since both HI and Sol are 3 spots from Sz 62.  Unless J has an IC on Sum.  But HI is still open for a move.

    So are you saying there is no way to slow Japan unless you fully commit to a KJF?  Or that you have to place bid units in the Pac (Russian bom like you mentioned, etc)?

    I’m not saying you can do all these things every game or that containing Japan is easy, but I think you can force them into making tough decisions early on when they aren’t earning 50+.

    I will also say it requires strong Russian and UK play to hold Ger at bay, that’s why I like 2 offensive units for Russia in a bid.  It allows you to potentially counter Bst, Epl, and Ukr on Rus 1.  (you can’t counter all of them but Ger can’t leave armies vulnerable either).  This means Ger has to really think about what they bring into what on G1.

    Surely, with a early Japanese push on USA to ever keep the US back door pressure from developing (while still getting the third National Objective bonus: Hawaii), Japan can grow at a much slower rate and still be effective.  Is this enough time for the allies to wean out a victory?  I’m not sure.  Germany can get a large enough tank corp to keep the russian advances at bay or destroy any allied landings in France or NWE.

    I guess I am saying that even a slowly advancing Japan (on their own self determined pace) is still one that will be too difficult to stop in due time.  Does slowing their advance 2-3 rounds make that much of a difference?

    Not sure, THAT’S why we play the games out.

  • Moderator

    Interesting, I wasn’t really thinking of J going that aggressive at the US early.
    I also don’t see a lot of ignoring Phil on J1, so yeah that could change things.

    You might still be able to get ships in the water though.  You can consider subs and air for the US (at least early).  If you pick off the J dd in Rd 1.  Its more of an aggressive US approach, but you can drop 3-6 subs on US 1 and with your air you can make J think twice.  It also might not be a bad idea to invite the attack on Sz 56 on J3.  As long as you don’t have US trns there.  You can bait the attack and then counter with air.  What you can’t do is give J numbers for a strafe where the BB can retreat or give them numbers to where they could survive a possible counter.

    Again this depends on how aggressive your group is in going after US early.  I tend to see (and use) some early J moves for a threat but it is typically a bluff.  I don’t really want a semi-large naval battle off the coast of WUS in rd 3, but its nice to put a mini threat there to make US think about it.  But it is such a telegraphed move the US always has the chance to absorb an attack in Sz 56 and counter.  So generally J won’t make the attack unless the number are so favorable it’s a no brainer.  And buying ftrs on US 1 isn’t a bad play either, since they can always help in Europe should Japans moves be bluffs. You can buy all the ftrs in Rd 1, then if relatively safe drop 3 ACs on US 2.


  • The recent max Japan move on USA had (at least one) tpt, DD, CA, BB and three loaded carriers in Hawaii J2
    And Japan doesn’t risk losing the DD on J1 when attacking sz53. they use just all air.

    It’s max pressure on USA, but it seems to do the trick to keep the US naval idea out of the realm of possiblities.
    Subs would be the only realistic thing for a USA 1 buy if you were to block with the DD (from SZ44)
    Even then, Japan can move into Hawaii J2 (most likely with that force described above.)

    Remember the point is to make USA either commit ALLOT of IPC’s in a defensive fashion early rounds that is not going against Germany OR forgo the pacific for several rounds (rd3 earliest)

    This is certainly not a sneaky move on Japans part, it is a calculated “Here’s OUR fleet, match it or run away”.

    And, Japan is almost happy to give Germany the early breathing room.

  • Moderator

    Cool move.  :-D

    What is UK typically doing in SE Asia?  I’m thinking they can hold Ind for a while in this case.  But I don’t know until I played out a few games seeing this.

    @axis_roll:

    And, Japan is almost happy to give Germany the early breathing room.

    Not to be boring, but it isn’t a bad play for the Allies to go all out KGF.  As long as the US didn’t buy Pac ships on US 1, the J2 move would be annoying but then you see the Allies throw everything at Ger.  Regardless, some people see this as the way to go anyway.

    I tend to think a little more balance is needed, but if you know J is going to force the issue it certainly isn’t bad to have the US supply major help to Europe starting in rd 1.


  • @DarthMaximus:

    What is UK typically doing in SE Asia?  I’m thinking they can hold Ind for a while in this case.  But I don’t know until I played out a few games seeing this.

    Sure, Japan can not do everything, and the early USA pressure is at a cost of strong Asian pressure.

    But UK really can not advance any further then holding burma for a turn (or two).
    Remember that the Japanese navy, upon seeing a bail of the usa forces on USA1 can move back to FIC (sz36) while taking Hawaii with minimal forces to get that NO.  the japanese mobility is scarey.  FIC/sz36 now threatens India J3.

    @DarthMaximus:

    @axis_roll:

    And, Japan is almost happy to give Germany the early breathing room.

    Not to be boring, but it isn’t a bad play for the Allies to go all out KGF.  As long as the US didn’t buy Pac ships on US 1, the J2 move would be annoying but then you see the Allies throw everything at Ger.  Regardless, some people see this as the way to go anyway.Â

    I tend to think a little more balance is needed, but if you know J is going to force the issue it certainly isn’t bad to have the US supply major help to Europe starting in rd 1.

    Yes, I agree, KGF is probably the most common (and effective) allied game plan employed.  That is why I usually do not over commit to the massive Japanese pressure on USA, but there are some axis players who like this pressure to force a USA defensive buy (on WUS USA2) to slow the USA effort against Germany.

    Out gaming group plays with a modified house rules set (the Chicago Rules) that evens the game a bit, gives the allies a fighting chance.  So in a straight-up 41 with NO/tech with a bid game, this might not be the best move.


  • Japan’s first purchase should always be a factory in Manchuria.  The 3 tanks you drop there every round become quite a nuisance for China and Russia.  In addition, if America liberates the factory for China, then China can’t build out of there because China can’t use factories!  An industrial complex is only 1 IPC more than 2 transports, and it can’t be killed.

    In all my games, an exclusive tank producing factory in Manchuria turns Japan into a monster on Russia’s doorstep by turn 5.


  • As my opinion:

    The US has to harass Japan as fast as possible, while Germany has its weak times, just in the first three rounds. germany usually lacks infantery on turn 2 to push their offense against the USSR.
    So the US builds up a medium sized fleet in the Pacific. (including at least 2 loaded transport). Keep the fleet slightly out of range of the main japanese airforce/fleet but position to take a money island or two, remove a national objective from Japan, etc. Force them to defend a lot of places (eventually leaving one vulnerable for an attack) or force them to try to come after your fleet (1 turn the japanese fleet/airforce moves out of position) and fall back. Therefore you do not need a decesive victroy, but distract Japan from its main objectives. Maybe you have to sacrifice your pacific navy to an combined airforce and naval attack by Japan, as major distraction.
    The difficult seems to be, when to turn your attention to the atlantic. If its too late then its game over.

    The main point is the following:
    You are forced to react on the Japanese opening round. Is Japan going straight after India, is Japan trying to take the islands first or is japan going for Russia?
    UK and China should try to whittle down the japanese ground forces, while the US needs to build up some fleet, to force Japan to invest into expensive and not too useful warships.

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